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BIG X

Carry on Bully +++COMPLETED+++

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Happy Easter folks.  It’s been a few weeks since I last splashed the glue across the desk.

 

When I finished my Cromwell trio I was in good spirits, but got side tracked with ‘research’ on possible German AFV’s and the forthcoming vintage Airfix GB of course.  So the weeks have been slipping by and the longer I left it – the harder it became to ‘get going’ again.  You know what it’s like…

 

Now I always find bank holidays are a good time for modelling and as we get a ‘double header’ at Easter – what better time to have a go at something new and more important – simple.  So I’m having another go at a PLASTIC SOLDIER COMPANY kit – but as you get 3 in the box and I found doing 3 Cromwells at the same time to be a lot of fun – it makes sense to build all 3 of these.

 

Having had a go at the Loyd Carrier the last time out I thought it would be good to have a go at the Universal Carrier.  I must admit I’ve never found it to be a very ‘attractive’ AFV – but after a bit of googling I am coming round to understanding what an important little vehicle it was.  ‘Allegedly’ according to Wikipedia – ‘with some 113,000 built by 1960 in the United Kingdom and abroad, it is the most produced armoured fighting vehicle in history’.  Quite a claim…

 

Here are the obligatory box and sprue shots…

 

UTC001.jpg

 

UTC002.jpg

 

UTC003.jpg

 

UTC004.jpg

 

UTC004.jpg

 

UTC005.jpg

 

UTC006.jpg

 

UTC007.jpg

 

As you can see the box depicts 8RB of the 11AD - instructions are as usual 'minimal' and you get 3 identical sprues in the box.  The parts count is nice and low - so hopefully I can make short work of them.  But as usual I know nothing about Universal Carriers - so I  will learn as I go along - trawling google - BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY AND HOPEFULLY - with the wise words of the good folk of Britmodeller.  Decals aren't included - but I've got plenty floating about.

 

All input gratefully received :) Steve

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A quick click of the search box here on the forum has pulled up a few 1/35 and 1/48 Carriers - almost exclusively from Tamiya, but I can't find and 1/72 examples to get some tips from.

 

Airfix seem to have done one at some point...

 

UTC007a.jpg

 

...and I'm pretty sure it would have had more parts than these kits.  But it does give me an idea for one of the three - I have a spare towing hook from my Loyd Carriers - so I may just add it to one of them.  But I don't want to get bogged down - getting too far in front of myself - a very bad habit of mine.

 

A closer look at the parts shows a few things - firstly I can guess that these will end up at about 3cm x 5cm - not massive and not a lot of room for too much detail...

 

UTC008.jpg

 

The detail on the figures is very good - but so tiny that - as usual by the time I get a coat of primer on and then a coat of paint - I may well lose a lot of the detail - shame - but only down to my cack handedness...

 

UTC009.jpg

 

...the two guys who go in the back do look a 'little relaxed' though - looks more like they are on holiday than off to fight a battle.

 

UTC010.jpg

 

...also - it's a pity one of the crew is wearing a beret - rather than a helmet like the rest - an extra head might have been a good idea - again I'll have to have a rummage in my growing 1/72 spares box.

 

UTC011.jpg

 

...sorry about the quality of the brengun picture - but hopefully you can see a dimple in the stock - should that be there???

 

Anyway - time for some work - as the part count isn't massive I'm going to get everything trimmed and sanded - stage 1 first - body and sides...

 

UTC012.jpg

 

...back in a bit...

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Nice looking kit. The dimple is not prototypical. It may be a crude attempt to replicate a metal fixing some stocks had, or it may be a mould flaw.

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10 minutes ago, John_W said:

Nice looking kit. The dimple is not prototypical. It may be a crude attempt to replicate a metal fixing some stocks had, or it may be a mould flaw.

It is a lovely little kit - the all in one wheels and tracks seem really nice - I know they were on the Loyd Carrier - so I'm very hopeful.

 

A bit more googling shows it could well represent the strap attachment...

 

67Mbren-015584_6.jpg

 

...but it looks nothing like this - so I think I might just fill it in - it's only about 0.5mm.

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The trimming and sanding down is all done - but in my haste I 'nearly' clipped these off...

 

UTC013.jpg

 

...looking a bit closer though - it would appear to be some sort of gearstick :doh: oh the joys of 1/72.

 

Anyway - progress has been made...

 

UTC014.jpg

 

...these little pots from ASDA come in very handy for keeping everything in order - so on with the gluing...

 

UTC015.jpg

 

...and yes - they are as tiny as I expected.

 

A quick dry fit of the interior bits shows a potential problem for my fat fingers and poor eyesight...

 

UTC016.jpg

 

The 2 troughs in the rear compartment are very narrow - so getting any detail or even an even coat of paint would be too difficult for me - so I have a plan...

 

UTC017.jpg

 

The dividing section - between front and back has very pronounced slots for positioning - so I have assembled the central section - with very careful use of glue...

 

UTC018.jpg

 

I've only glued the top part of these bits - so they don't stick to the main body - for now at least...

 

UTC019.jpg

 

UTC020.jpg

 

UTC021.jpg

 

So I've been able to glue the back plate on...

 

UTC022.jpg

 

...and still remove the centre...

 

UTC023.jpg

 

...which gives me a fighting chance to get some paint in.  A small idea and not following the meagre instruction sheet - but I think it will help me build a better model in the long run.

 

 

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These should end up looking very neat indeed, I will be following this with interest. I have to request, at some point, a large diorama photo of these, on a grass mat perhaps, of your British armoured formation on the move. Something about having multiples of one vehicle small enough to make large formation dioramas really interests me. In the past, I bought a Zvezda Russian infantry platoon just to visualise Soviet section tactics.

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A bit more progress - I tried fitting the Bren through the front hatch and found either the gun is a bit 'fat' or the hole is a bit 'tight' - so out with the micro files to broaden the hatch by about 1mm...

 

UTC024.jpg

 

...pardon the dust ;)

 

UTC025.jpg

 

With the back panel set I fitted these boxes - maybe where they kept their sandwiches - I don't know for sure - but that lovely dimple in the top tells me it is very thin gauge steel :mental:

 

I did say I'm not an expert :D

 

OK - with the butty boxes on it was time for the bedding boxes...

 

UTC027.jpg

 

...now I've hit a snag - the canvas roll is supposed to drape over the box - but...

 

UTC031.jpg

 

...that is quite a huge gap and the plastic is so tough their is no way to bend it into submission.

 

I'm off for a think...  :undecided:

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OK - after a rummage through a box of bits I think I have found a solution to the unruly canvas tarp.  I have no clue what they are from and I like the idea that they are all different - well that's my story and I'm sticking to it...

 

UTC032.jpg 

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The last bit of progress for today...

 

UTC034.jpg

 

a bit of googling shows these are frontal towing points - this is what the real thing looks like...

 

UTC033.jpg

 

now - rather than shave them off / cut some really thin plastic card / drill holes in it / bend it to this shape and then stick it back on - I  took the easy route and just drilled the fronts...

 

UTC035.jpg

 

...under a load of paint I  think they'll look OK.

 

Before I  go any further though I need to have a good think about visible areas of the interior - as it looks a 'bit blank'.  I can see options for a radio in one - which is standard for a group of 3 apparently.  More bizarrely I may 'up gun' one with a 50cal MG - I need to find the pictures I saw earlier and come up with a suitable 'excuse' for it.  Then I  think some kind of dashboard controls in front of the steering wheel - there is room - if it is really flat.  Finally a 'tin box' or 2 might add a bit more interest.  Any other bright ideas would be most appreciated.

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Having slept on it - most uncomfortable - I have figured out what happened here...

 

UTC031.jpg

 

The only reference in the scant instructions to the back box is a tiny picture of the finished carrier - with the roll on top...

 

UTC036.jpg

 

to me this picture shows 2 things - as you can see the box itself is clearly oblong in profile - not square - about 3mm x 5mm and it rests 'flush' on the 2 exhaust pipes.

 

As you will notice from the artwork - the middle box on the picture sits 'just above' the smaller box on the right and flush with those exhausts and has that lip on top - which is what I followed blindly.  The result is that gap under the roll.

 

Now - a bit of googling this morning has thrown up these...

 

UTC038.jpg

 

UTC037.jpg

 

These 2 pictures clearly show...

 

  • an oblong not square box - correct
  • the lip of the box facing up not out :doh:
  • the exhausts revealed - not flush :doh:

so...  That extra height would probably get the roll to sit flat...

It doesn't help me - as mine are well and truly welded on - but it might help others in the future.

 

Anyway - I'm not going to let it spoil my day :D onwards and upwards as they say.

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In my 'quest' to make the interior look a bit more 'interesting' - as the kit doesn't come with much in the way of 'extras' I have found this 'satchel' picture...

 

UTC039.jpg

 

now the opposite side of the interior has a nasty sink mark - which could be filled - but a bag like look more interesting...

 

UTC040.jpg

 

luckily enough - as if someone was trying to cheer me up after the box fiasco - I found 3 of these in the spares box...

 

UTC041.jpg

 

a quick test fit shows they could have been made for the job...

 

UTC042.jpg 

 

...though I will probably lose the straps and I  found some tiny red crosses that will fit on the top flap...

 

UTC043.jpg

 

so that's me cheered up a bit :D

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I'm interested to see how you are going to grossly over-complicate your life with these tiny critters – perhaps some engine detail or maybe a packed lunch for the crew?

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On the other side of the central divider I have found a 'tin box'...

 

UTC044.jpg

 

now I made a tin box - or a gunsight holder to be more precise for my 17pdr - so I  think I can knock a couple more up...

 

UTC045.jpg

 

That will do for 2 of the carriers - but for the third I want to put in a radio - here are some examples...

 

UTC046.jpg

 

UTC049.jpg

 

UTC048.jpg

 

UTC047.jpg

 

does anyone know what this round thing is...

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4 minutes ago, BIG X said:

I  think I can knock a couple more up

I don't think we should condone that sort of behaviour. :nono:

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8 minutes ago, BIG X said:

does anyone know what this round thing is...

Looks like this:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/WWII-Military-Radio-Receiver-Transmitter-WS19-MK-Antenna-Variometer-/123042717102

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5 minutes ago, Gorby said:

aha - so it is part of the radio then - I  thought it might be a thermos flask ;)

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Aye up Steve,

 

Nice going on the carriers. You planning on recreating the entire 11th Armoured Division then? :D

 

Regards 

 

Steve 

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Well it's been a busy day - messing about basically :blush: oh and watching the McGregor brothers explaining the history of the RAF on BBC2...

 

I took a look at the of 2 Bren Guns and decided I needed to drill through the trigger guards - here is an after and before...

 

UTC050.jpg

 

at 0.2mm I can't get a trigger in there :mental: so it was onto the steering wheels and driver bodies...

 

UTC051.jpg

 

UTC052.jpg

 

As I'm building MkII's I will be adding the stronger corrugated mudguards - these are going to be awkward to fit - as they need to go on last - so I'll need to be careful with the glue...

 

UTC054.jpg

 

and finally I've been cleaning up the tracks a bit and sticking blu-tak over the mating points...

 

UTC053.jpg

 

...now back to the McGregor boys...

 

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5 minutes ago, fatfingers said:

Aye up Steve,

 

Nice going on the carriers. You planning on recreating the entire 11th Armoured Division then? :D

 

Regards 

 

Steve 

...funny you should ask that :lol:

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Posted (edited)
On 3/31/2018 at 8:29 AM, BIG X said:

 

...sorry about the quality of the brengun picture - but hopefully you can see a dimple in the stock - should that be there???

I know some weapons are slung through the stock rather than through a clip at the bottom or back. Im not sure about the Bren but its possible if you look at the real gun in this photo. CJOlCnQ.jpg

NA0SN3Z.jpg

so there you have one with a sling and one without.

 

Dennis

 

sadly i hadn't read far enough. I see you answered the question yourself. 

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle

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1 hour ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

I know some weapons are slung through the stock rather than through a clip at the bottom or back. Im not sure about the Bren but its possible if you look at the real gun in this photo. CJOlCnQ.jpg

NA0SN3Z.jpg

so there you have one with a sling and one without.

 

Dennis

 

sadly i hadn't read far enough. I see you answered the question yourself. 

 

Hey Dennis - thanks for that - the more eyes the better.  That leads me onto another question though - I noticed the front of the barrels are commonly this silver colour - it seems unusual - any ideas why they aren't black or 'gunmetal' at least??? 

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Posted (edited)

Hello @BIG X .. Two possible reasons. The 1st and more likely is the alloy justwont accept the “blueing” or black as you call it “parkerizing”. Or the silver is  the real barrel and the parkerized/blued area is a heat shield.

     The barrels on most Air-cooled MG’s and Light Mg’s are removable and meant to be replaced every 100-500 rounds to prevent damage from heat. The Mg.34 and 42’s usually would swap out just by releasing a quick release. Most Mg’s come with 2-4 extra barrels and the loader/ammo carrier had a pair of asbestos gloves to swap out at the required intervals.  

    Actually i just looked at the photo’s close up. It looks as if the Bren had a quick release set-up for the barrel. If you examine the connection between the barrel and gas return (lower pipe) there is a turnbuckle of sorts that looks as if it goes into a groove when turned to release the barrel. 

 

Dennis

 

here i added a video of the bren gun. About 2:00-2:45 is the break down of the gun. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=sNbfEXtngXw

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle

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Bit late to this one!  Glad normal service has resumed!!  👍

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9 minutes ago, Lawzer said:

Bit late to this one!  Glad normal service has resumed!!  👍

Welcome aboard Ian - do you want to grab a seat in the back / man the machine gun / do the driving - or man the radio - which is on the way...

I am counting on you to keep me moving along - so if I'm driving you better call out the instructions from the map ;)

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Now you may remember yesterday I was considering 'up gunning' one of the carriers.  Well last night the Sarge got into a poker game with some wise guys from 3RTR and came back with this...

 

UTC067.jpg

 

...I said I'd come up with a good 'back story'.

 

In reality some Sherman crews were keen to ditch their turret mounted 50cals and these were often used to 'beef up' the armament on halftracks by  adding extra MG points.  But as you can see here - what's good for a halftrack is good for a carrier.  My good friend @badger always says - 'if in doubt - go with the photo evidence' - so I am... :mental: daft me... probably :lol: 

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